Water Concern Temporarily Shuts Down Pilgrim's Pride - KTRE.com | Lufkin and Nacogdoches, Texas

06/06/08 - Nacogdoches

Water Concern Temporarily Shuts Down Pilgrim's Pride

by Donna McCollum

The morning shift of Pilgrim's Pride employees was sent home almost as soon as they clocked in. Prior to that the late shift was sent home. The concern was brown water discovered about ten o'clock last night. Data employee, Philip Mooser said the water,  "was brown to black and of course it wasn't drinkable and later last night it was shut off. No one knew if the water could be dangerous to humans and equipment.

City crews began flushing out the lines. Fire hydrants were opened up sending thousands of gallons water down the drain.  That didn't clear things up so plant operators chose to shut down the lines. The process of 300,000 broilers came to a stop. About 150 employees were sent home. Mooser said,  " We got the day off and we get a long weekend, so that was nice. "

City officials began researching. City engineers checked out water tanks that serve the plant. Water tests showed the water was perfectly safe to drink. City leaders now think they know what happened. Deputy City Manager Victoria LaFollet-Koenig said, " We did put in a new 36" main in yesterday. And it was a new main." They speculate grit and dirt in the line got into the water supply.   "Even again it met all health tests that needed to be met and the water is safe, " reassured LaFollet-Koenig.

With that news, the four o'clock shift at pilgrim's pride reported to work. This evening production is back on schedule.

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